The Pens have played 48 games. That's a good, round number since last season was 48 games long, so it's time for a quick stats comparison.
For shits, we've added the best Penguins team in franchise history, the 1992-93 squad, through their first 48 games.
This is really a moot point since we're still staring down the barrel of a long Olympic break and a trade deadline, but if this is last season, the playoffs are starting right now and the Pens once again would technically have the #1 overall seed in the East. Does it feel different? We think it does.
If you're like us, you watched the Blackhawks play both the Bruins and Ducks over the weekend. All three teams are easily in the top 8 in the NHL with the Penguins. But what's different about those teams is they have four lines. Granted, the bottom lines don't score every time they're on the ice, but you know they are there. The Penguins are sorely missing that.
When healthy, we'll take the Pens' 6 D-men against any team in the NHL as long as Scuderi doesn't let Kris Letang go rogue. And the Pens' top 6 can go toe-to-toe with any top 6 you can think of. But as the teams eventually get whittled down in the playoffs, the games get tighter, the nets get smaller, and the defensemen get bigger. Crosby and Malkin's lines will get shut down. We've seen it in every series that spelled the Penguins' demise. We're hoping Shero and Co. make some moves after the Olympics to create a deeper forward set.